Blog Banter #19 – Be careful what you say, Roc

Welcome to the nineteenth installment of the EVE Blog Banter, the monthly EVE Online blogging extravaganza created by CrazyKinux. The EVE Blog Banter involves an enthusiastic group of gaming bloggers, a common topic within the realm of EVE Online, and a week to post articles pertaining to the said topic. The resulting articles can either be short or quite extensive, either funny or dead serious, but are always a great fun read! Any questions about the EVE Blog Banter should be directed to crazykinux@gmail.com. Check out other EVE Blog Banter articles at the bottom of this post!

This months topic comes to us from @evepress, and he asks: The CSM: CCP’s Meta Game? – The CSM, an eve player’s voice to CCP.Right? In the grand scheme of things yes, the players bring up issues and the CSM presents them to CCP. But in its current iteration the CSM was supposed to be given small authority to assign CCP assets to projects that the CSM thought needed work on. As it has come out, this was not the case. So fellow bloggers, is the CSM worth it, has the CSM improved the game in any way, or is it just a well thought out scamby CCP to give us players a false sense of input in the game? What’s your take?
The road to hell is paved with good intentionsSt. Francis de Sales

Everybody has an opinion on how to do things better; it’s a fact as old as mankind itself. There are several quips & quotes that paraphrase this sentiment: walk a mile in another man’s shoes being one of the more famous.

Opinion is based on perception and experience. We all have our own views and individual histories that have shaped our lives thus far; no two are identical, so therefore, coming to an accord on any topic is a grand undertaking to say the least. The more people you introduce into this mix, the more unique perspectives there will be, and the exponential growth of conflict is unstoppable.

I am sure this particular blog banter is going to generate a lot of interest from players of EVE Online, as well as from CCP itself. I am personally looking forward to reading as many as possible, seeing how things pan out, giving my opinion here and there.

I believe the topic of CSM falls into a few generalized opinions:

  • Players that love the CSM
  • Players that want to believe in the CSM but are disheartened by CCP’s treatment of it
  • Players that think the CSM is a waste
  • CCP staff that love the CSM
  • CCP staff that like the concept of the CSM as long as it doesn’t involve any effort on their end
  • CCP staff that think the CSM is a waste

I am sure other EVE bloggers will pick one of these views and go into their own personal support of it, or debate it.

My dilemma is I can see all points of view, based on my own experiences with CCP, with MMO players as a whole, past and present, and from other game developers I have interacted with on similar endeavours.

Through all of it I have learned two things:

  1. The player base is never satisfied, no matter what you do.
  2. Ultimately, if the company continues to profit, everything else falls to the wayside.

That is the way of things, the way of the Force. Out of sight, out of mind. Hurts us it can, hmmm?

I am willing to respect and debate my opinions with others, provided it is done so in an intelligent and logical manner. I bring passion to the table, and admire that in others. It’s only when a discussion deteriorates to ignorance and an unwillingness to listen that I become frustrated and will simply walk away, or punch someone in the throat (as is the habit of my newest corp mate. She’s pretty awesome).

I have ideas on how the CSM could be better. I have ideas on how CCP could run things better. I have ideas on how EVE could be better. Like I started off saying, we all have our own ideas.

I choose to be thankful for CCP’s willingness to even have a CSM. Many games do not. They simply do what they will, and when things start going poorly, then they try a “too little, too late” approach, listening to everything their users say, making drastic swings in direction, usually taking a year or two to continually refine and refine until they either get it right or have committed themselves so far down the wrong path that there is no coming back! (Do you hear me Sony Online Entertainment?!? I will never forgive you for f*cking up my Star Wars Galaxies!)

Ok, Roc, take a breath. *breathes deep calming breaths*

So does CCP have it all figured out when it comes to the CSM? Hell no.

Could it be better? Hell yes.

Could it be worse? In many ways … CCP could abolish the CSM altogether … CCP could listen to everything players say (Jebus help us!) … CCP could just do what I tell them in every regard … wait, that should be in the make things better category.

So bottom line for me, having met and developed relationships with quite a few people at CCP, is that they believe they are doing the right thing, for the most part. They are divided, just like any growing company, and not everything runs smoothly, just like any growing company.

Players should always be careful what they ask from a gaming company; they might just get what they ask for (F*cking Sony Online Entertainment! The greatest franchise of ALL time and you monkeys STILL managed to F*ck it up! Oh sure, blame Lucasarts; it was their creative control that destroyed the game. Whatthefuckever! How’s the Matrix Online doing for you, and other big name properties you destroyed that didn’t involve Lucasarts?!? You have so put me off the idea of an online Star Wars MMO that I’m not even willing to try The Old Republic because of the hurt you’ve caused me, and I believe in Bioware as a company a helluva lot more than I do you!!! Dammit, why couldn’t you just leave well enough alone!)

On a more rational note, if any of you reading this know a SOE employee, punch them right now … hard … in the throat, and tell them Roc says hi.

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9 responses to “Blog Banter #19 – Be careful what you say, Roc

  1. I find myself hoping against hope that this will not turn into EVE’s NGE moment. That would be a terrible terrible waste. I give CCP some creidt in that I belive that they’ll have learned from Sony’s mistake though and will come at the current drama with a rational head.

    I’ve said elsewhere, and many times, that the root of the problem here, as I see it, is communication. I’m pretty certain that iff CCP would just open up and share a bit more of their vision for Incarna and Dust alot of the rage would die down. And I’m not talking about a simple “This is new and shiny, it will be awesome.” I’m talking a well thought out statement of their vision for EVE, where they want to take it, and how they plan to get there.

    • Oh I truly doubt this is the NGE. If it is, it will probably turn me off of MMOs forever.

      As for Dust and Incarna, I honestly don’t care if CCP shares anything about them yet.

      To me, the issue is like you said, and like Mynxee has been preaching across the blogosphere… communication.

      There needs to be better and effective methods of communication between CCP and the CSM or it will fail.

      It really is as simple as that.

      The problem is the unpredictable consequence of not improving this communication. Will players quit because the CSM fail? I guess it depends on how many really care that there is a CSM in the first place.

  2. But still, even when the communication is perfect, if they keep saying ‘no’ to every proposal, what’s the point of it all ? It should be a two way street…

  3. Problem with CMS is that it was a PR move originally and a lie that CCP cannot support, unfortunately, the player base is too intelligent to fall for the ongoing lies. Apathy is evident in the dismal numbers remaining active on forums in elections. FED UP is where CCP is leading us all. I have no respect for the lie or the liars the at continue it on CCP’s behalf.

  4. At the very least, releases by CCP certainly put on a good impression of listening to the CSM. Without actively participating in the process (or even actively following each proceeding) it is hard for me to really judge how much is truly player-driven change and how much is a façade.

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